Venezuela’s Foreign Minister Yvan Gil, left center, and Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, talk after a press conference at the Foreign Ministry in Caracas, Venezuela, Tuesday, April 18, 2023. InternationalIndiaAfricaCARACAS (Sputnik) – Russia will put all efforts to help Venezuela’s economy become less dependent on the “whims and geopolitical games” of the United States, and it will benefit from Russia’s experience, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Tuesday. “We will do everything we can to make Venezuela’s economy less and less dependent on the whims and geopolitical games of the US or any over actors from the Western camp. And I am convinced that our experience will come in handy for our Venezuelan friends because we are now the world champion in the number of sanctions, and we are gaining experience quickly,” Lavrov told a briefing after talks with Venezuelan Foreign Minister Yvan Gil Pinto. Lavrov added that Venezuela’s hydrocarbons and economy are subject to “strongest illegal sanctions.” “It is their country [Venezuela], it is their hydrocarbons, it is their economy, which is subject to the strongest illegal sanctions. They have to decide for themselves how to keep working, how to keep developing their state,” the minister said. Lavrov noted that Russia and Venezuela agreed to enhance cooperation in the field of new technologies, oil production, and the development of gas fields. EconomyTrade Sea Route Between Russia, Venezuela to Be Launched Soon, Commerce Chamber Head Says7 April, 14:43 GMT”We have numerous projects planned in the fields of oil production, development of gas fields, agriculture, medicine and pharmaceuticals, communications, space, and new technologies – we will increase the volume and pace of cooperation in all these areas and will continue to make active use of the existing mechanisms for this purpose, including the high-level intergovernmental commission,” the Russian foreign minister said. He added that the parties agreed on practical measures to expand trade and investment cooperation and contacts between businesses while taking into account current realities. Moscow and Caracas have advanced in the development of a system of exchange of financial messages, bypassing SWIFT, and the use of Russia’s MIR payment system in Venezuela, the Venezuelan foreign minister told the joint news conference. “Good news for Venezuelan agricultural producers in aspects related to the regulation of food exports and imports, and we are also seeing progress in terms of the financial information exchange system. It is being created and is an alternative to the international company SWIFT,” he said.AmericasRussia, Venezuela Discussing Boosting Cooperation on Food Security – Ambassador17 August 2022, 21:55 GMT”Two central banks [Russian and Venezuelan] are working on it, as well as on MIR cards, which will allow Russian tourists to pay directly in Venezuela, bypassing large multinational corporations.””This [discussion] is developing, it will be part of a high-level discussion in the framework of the intergovernmental commission next week in Russia. Soon we will bring good news to the peoples of Russia and Venezuela,” he underscored.Russia and Venezuela agreed to move forward in all areas of bilateral and international cooperation, “especially in the aspects of energy, which are very important, finance, air and sea transport, and trade,” the Venezuelan foreign minister noted.Lavrov has since invited Pinto to visit Russia. “I am sincerely grateful for our meeting. I invited the minister to visit the Russian Federation at a convenient time for him,” Lavrov said at a news conference in Caracas.The Russian foreign minister is presently on a tour of Latin America on April 17-21, during which he is visiting Brazil, Venezuela, Nicaragua and Cuba.